Scientists identify specific brain region and circuits controlling attention

Norepinephrine-producing neurons in the locus coeruleus produce attention focus, impulse control via two distinct connections to prefrontal cortex.

David Orenstein | Picower Institute for Learning and Memory • mit
Nov. 3, 2020 ~8 min

neuroscience anxiety biology optogenetics research behavior school-of-science brain-and-cognitive-sciences picower-institute

How a worm may yield insights into the gut-brain relationship

Gurrein Madan, brain and cognitive sciences graduate student and MathWorks Fellow, studies gut–brain signaling with implications for human health.

Alison Gold | School of Science • mit
Oct. 27, 2020 ~6 min

health neuroscience research students awards-honors-and-fellowships graduate-postdoctoral school-of-science brain-and-cognitive-sciences picower-institute

Elegance in C. elegans

Gurrein Madan, brain and cognitive sciences graduate student and MathWorks Fellow, studies gut–brain signaling with implications for human health.

Alison Gold | School of Science • mit
Oct. 27, 2020 ~6 min

health neuroscience research students awards-honors-and-fellowships graduate-postdoctoral school-of-science brain-and-cognitive-sciences picower-institute

Neuroscientists discover a molecular mechanism that allows memories to form

Modifications to chromosomes in “engram” neurons control the encoding and retrieval of memories.

Anne Trafton | MIT News Office • mit
Oct. 5, 2020 ~7 min

dna genetics neuroscience memory research school-of-science brain-and-cognitive-sciences picower-institute

Live imaging method brings structure to mapping brain function

Scientists distinguish brain regions based on what they do, but now have a new way to overlay information about how they are built.

David Orenstein | Picower Institute for Learning and Memory • mit
Sept. 24, 2020 ~6 min

neuroscience imaging microscopy vision research school-of-science brain-and-cognitive-sciences picower-institute 3-d-imaging

As information flows through brain’s heirarchy, higher regions use higher-frequency waves

Study also finds specific frequency bands of brain waves associated with encoding, or inhibiting encoding, of sensory information across the cortex.

David Orenstein | Picower Institute for Learning and Memory • mit
Sept. 10, 2020 ~6 min

neuroscience memory research school-of-science brain-and-cognitive-sciences picower-institute

Study suggests animals think probabilistically to distinguish contexts

New statistical model may help scientists understand how animals infer whether surroundings are novel or haven’t changed enough to be a new context.

David Orenstein | Picower Institute for Learning and Memory • mit
Aug. 12, 2020 ~6 min

biology memory research behavior school-of-science brain-and-cognitive-sciences center-for-brains-minds-and-machines picower-institute

Neural vulnerability in Huntington’s disease tied to release of mitochondrial RNA

Unique survey of gene expression by cell type in humans and mice reveals several deficits affecting the most vulnerable neurons.

David Orenstein | Picower Institute for Learning and Memory • mit
July 21, 2020 ~7 min

neuroscience rna immunology broad-institute research cells school-of-science brain-and-cognitive-sciences computer-science-and-artificial-intelligence-laboratory-csail picower-institute huntingtons

Findings weaken notion that size equals strength for neural connections

Among study’s many surprises may be a new way to address Fragile X syndrome — by finding a “protein X.”

David Orenstein | Picower Institute for Learning and Memory • mit
July 14, 2020 ~5 min

neuroscience autism research school-of-science brain-and-cognitive-sciences synapses picower-institute

How worms move: Dopamine helps nematodes coordinate motor behaviors

To spy on worms for days on end, Picower Institute scientists invent a new open-source microscopy platform.

David Orenstein | Picower Institute for Learning and Memory • mit
June 30, 2020 ~8 min

neuroscience microscopy animals research school-of-science brain-and-cognitive-sciences national-science-foundation-nsf national-institutes-of-health-nih picower-institute

/

11